Review: LSTN Troubadour

LSTN Headphones | On-Ear Headphone | $150[IMG]LSTN is a new headphone company that just started out. At launch, they have decided to release three models, two on-ear and one in-ear, priced at 150, 100, and 50, respectively. The headphones seem to have lots in common, sonic signatures and wood being two things that keep them very similar. The Troubadour represent LSTN’s current flagship, on-ear model. 

Specifications

  • Driver: Dynamic
  • Frequency Response: 18 Hz – 22 kHz
  • Impedance: 32 ohms
  • Sensitivity: 101 dB

In the Box

  • LSTN Troubadour
  • Audio Cable
  • Carrying Pouch
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Design

Wood. This is the main element that is involved with every single one of LSTN’s designs. The selections of wood are absolutely gorgeous on the Troubadour and give a beautiful, natural look to the headphones as a whole. There are three different woods to choose from, for not only the Troubadours, but the entire collection: Beech, Cherry, and Ebony.

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The design of the headphones is very stylish with a nice gloss finish. The metal accents give the Troubadour a very modern design, as do the triangular housings. LSTN did a great job choosing a solid design for the Troubadour.

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Design: ★★★★

Audio

The choice to use wood with these headphones was done for the same reasons most companies do it. Wood offers natural resonances in the low-end of the spectrum and a more natural sound overall. The sound of the Troubadours is a smoother v-shape as a whole. Softer treble couples with deep bass and lush mids.

The bass has a bigger focus on the lower-bass regions right between the mid-bass and sub-bass. This combination creates a sound that has a slight boom to it that doesn’t overpower too much. The solid-textured sub-bass gives the bass a strong and smooth presence to it. The lower-spectrum of the bass does cover up a bit of the mid-bass punch keeping it in the back.

The midrange, like the bass, is smooth in the lower octaves. This creates a sound that’s very non-fatiguing. A loss of detailing in the lower-midrange comes as a result of this smoothness. Vocals have a very emotive lushness to them while being able to maintain ample energy up top to create the needed hint of sweetness. Upper-midrange clarity is strong enough to shine through, but won’t take from the smooth signature.

As we go up top, we find that the treble as a whole seems a little relaxed. The lower treble has a strong punch to it that offers good presence as a whole. It misses the mark in both detailing and extension unfortunately. The upper treble is very well detailed despite having an early roll off. This part of the treble is presented in a very friendly soft fashion. This gives the treble a very nice sizzle that won’t offend.

Audio: ★★★★½

Build

The Troubadour do come coupled with a carrying pouch to keep the headphones safe while they aren’t in use. I actually do recommend using the pouch with these headphones as there are some connections that don’t feel as secure, or tight, as they should. The majority of the build is actually quite good though.

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The housings have a nice large wood face on the outside that covers the back-side of the driver and more. Wood is naturally a very strong material and these have quite a nice glossy finish to them. Surrounding the rest of the housing is a plastic craftsmanship. Metal arms hold the housings to the headband that is metal as well. The mechanism in which the arm connects to the headband doesn’t seem as secure or tight as it should be having a bit of a wiggle to it.

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The headband is created with a thin, brushed metal. The headband actually has a stiffness to it that feels both strong and sturdy. The headband styling is split and feels great as a whole. It’s not thick, but it’s built just fine.

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On the bottom of each housing is a female 2.5 mm jack to connect the cable. The cable is a braided cable that feels very strong and firm. There are strain reliefs wherever necessary. The cable does an ample job avoiding tangles as well. The cable is well constructed for what it’ll be used for.

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On the ends of each cable is a standard jack, 2.5 mm for the side that goes into the ‘phones, and 3.5 mm to connect to your device. The 2.5 mm jack has a beautiful wooden housing that matches that of the headphones while the opposite side has an angled housing made out of rubber. Strain reliefs come out of each jack to resist cable strain while the jack is gold plated.

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Build: ★★★★½

Comfort

The Troubadour is an on-ear model in which the pads rest on your ear. The pads themselves are thinner, but very plush. There is a piece of foam covering the housing covers as well that will rest on your ears. Fortunately, this is also very soft. The headband has two very thin strips of padding which can get uncomfortable after a little while. Overall, pillows sit on your ears while two metal strips run across your head.

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Comfort: ★★★★½

Value

The Troubadours come priced at 150 dollars exactly and represent LSTN’s flagship model. They offer a consumer-oriented sound that won’t offend. For the sound you get, the headphones are priced competitively, but will seem expensive when compared to the best bang-for-the-buck headphones out there. They are built great and comfortable to wear. The cables are equipped with a remote and mic for smartphone use. Additionally, as with the rest of LSTN’s lineup, a portion of the purchase will go towards the Starkey Hearing Foundation to help restore hearing to an underprivileged deaf child in need.

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Value: ★★★★½

Final Thoughts

LSTN is a new company that just launched recently. They have a headphone line designed around wood; both for looks and sound. The plush, soft pads make them comfortable, while the wood gives them a strong build and stylish look. LSTN tuned these headphones to be consumer-friendly with an inoffensive sound that is sure to please.

I’d like to thank Zoya for the product sample

Overall Score

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LSTN Troubadour

† All prices are in US currency.
This review was written by the iFans.com Review Team. Cumulative scores are rounded to the nearest half or full star.
This accessory, product, or app was received as a sample. Thanks Zoya for the product sample.
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